Starting a project

 

Finding land

 

This is covered in the Where to Grow (top) section. This page is about starting, organising and developing a group into a flourishing organisation.

 

The RHS provide useful advice here www.rhs.org.uk/communities

 

As do TCV here http://www.tcv.org.uk/hollybush

 

And Incredible Edible Todmorden http://www.incredible-edible-todmorden.co.uk/resources/17-tips-for-incredible-edible-activists

 

FCFCG https://www.farmgarden.org.uk/publications

 

Doing Good in Leeds (training courses) http://doinggoodleeds.org.uk/training-directory

 

 

Types of group / organisation 

 

When you start, you'll probably either be an existing group from somewhere else, or you'll recruit friends and colleagues into an informal group. Initially you may not need to do any more, but if you want to apply for funding, insurance etc you'll need a bank account. And for that, like Feed Leeds, you'll need to become an Unincorporated Association.

 

 

1) Unincorporated Associations  

 

These are groups of individuals who enter into an agreement as volunteers to form a body to accomplish a purpose. They're simple to set up - all you need to do is write a Constitution and then agree to abide by the terms within it.  Unlike charitable companies and CIOs, you and the other trustees will be liable for what you do, because unincorporated associations don’t have legal status. So you may not be able to employ staff, own land or hold investments in its name, but you can have a bank account, insurance etc, and you can apply for funds, so it's worth considering.

 

Committee structure for UAs. 

 

Sample Constitution (from Leicestershire) http://www.valonline.org.uk/constitution-template

 

Find the Feed Leeds constitution to download here

 

If you do apply for a bank account, they will probably ask for a signed copy of the constitution, witnessed IDs for the named officer signatories, and a simple business plan.

 

Simple business plan http://www.communityactionderby.org.uk/resources-for-groups/business-planning

 

 

2) Community Interest Companies (CICs) 

 

CICs are the next step up and are designed for social enterprises that want to use their profits and assets for the public good. CICs offer the flexibility and certainty of a proper company, but have special features to make sure they're working for the benefit of a community.

 

More about CICs http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/+/http://www.cicregulator.gov.uk/CICleaflets/FAQ%20-%20October%202009%20V7.00%20Final.pdf

 

CIC Governance http://www.manna.me.uk/cic/governance/

 

Advice from The Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/society/2009/dec/01/setting-up-community-interest-company

 

CIC's can easily convert to become CIOs

 

 

3) Charitable Incorporated Organisations (CIOs) 

 

CIOs offer all the benefits of a charitable company such as limited liability, corporate entity, exemption from Corporation Tax, Gift Aid and so on, but are much simpler to run.

 

More about CIOs http://www.charitycommission.gov.uk/frequently-asked-questions/faqs-about-charitable-incorporated-organisations-(cios)/cios-general-information/

 

 

4) Others  

 

In time you may want to consider becoming something even more adventurous; a mutual, a co-op, a limited company, a full charity, an industrial and provident society, or a trust - but by then you'll probably know more about it than we do!

 

More about social enterprises https://www.gov.uk/set-up-a-social-enterprise

 

and Knowhow Non-Profit: http://knowhownonprofit.org/contact-info

 

 

Please advise of any broken links, or links you think should be included here